RALEIGH, NC June 12, 2014 – Dads are the most important men in the lives of their babies. They play a major part in a mother’s journey through pregnancy and the health of their children. To celebrate Father’s Day, the March of Dimes is showing its appreciation to dads for their contributions to the March of Dimes’ mission for stronger, healthier babies.
“As a proud father and grandfather, I know first-hand the joy that the birth of a new baby brings,” said Donny Lambeth, Chair of the North Carolina Chapter Board of March of Dimes. “Being involved in every step of the mother’s pregnancy and discovering with her your baby’s development is an experience beyond measure.”
By accompanying the mother to prenatal visits, both parents can grasp the development of their unborn child. Their baby will start to feel very real to them. At the end of the first trimester, they will be able to hear his or her heartbeat; during the second trimester, an ultrasound will reveal a tiny head and limbs. Dads’ early presence in their baby’s life helps foster a more meaningful fatherhood.
“A dad’s healthy lifestyle can contribute not only to the health of the baby’s mother but also the health of your unborn baby,” explained Lambeth. “I would encourage dads to share a healthy diet with the mother, quit cigarettes and alcohol to support her, alleviate stressful situations, and learn as much as they can about the changes she is going through as her pregnancy progresses.”
March of Dimes advises dads and dads-to-be to learn the signs of preterm labor (less than 37 weeks), and to contact the mother’s health care provider or take her to the hospital if she experiences abnormal or unexpected symptoms during her pregnancy.
In North Carolina, one in eight babies is born premature. Preterm labor signs a mother may experience are:
- Contractions that make her belly tighten up
- Change in the color of her vaginal discharge, or bleeding
- The feeling that the baby is pushing down
- Low, dull backache
- Belly cramps or cramps that feel like she is having her period
In celebration of Father’s Day, the March of Dimes also continues its annual imbornto campaign through June 15. The organization has partnered with retailers and brands, including Scentsy, Martha Stewart, Kmart and eBay, to remind people that every baby is born to do something great and that no matter what you were born to do, the March of Dimes helped you get there. Consumers are encouraged to shop, dine or donate where they see the imbornto seal to get involved and support the cause. Visit imbornto.com for more details.
For more than 75 years, moms and babies have benefited from March of Dimes research, education, vaccines, and breakthroughs. Find out how you can help raise funds to prevent premature birth and birth defects by walking in March for Babies at www.marchforbabies.org Find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.